I recently had the opportunity to present a keynote at the Pittsburgh Human Resource Association’s Annual Conference. A funny thing happened as I presented my topic, How to Stop Workplace Burnout and Build Employee Resiliency: the technology CRASHED!
What was unexpected became a study in resiliently bouncing back from this debacle.
After the collective gasp from the 400 or so attendees, I had to make a quick decision: should I wait until the “tech guy” comes in to fix the problem OR do I move on to Plan B?
I chose Plan B.
Since we were on a tight timeline (which is common in most conferences), I simply presented the keynote without any technology. Although surprised, I wasn’t really flustered by the glitch: I was well prepared, an experienced speaker, and incredibly passionate about getting my message out to build a movement to eradicate workplace burnout.
In other words, I focused on the best way to move forward with the least amount of stress for everyone.
So I went “old school” for the keynote: no PowerPoints, nothing to rely on, just me sharing my insights and ideas on how avoiding burnout can build employee resiliency.
How Do You Handle the Unexpected?
How quickly do your employees (or you?!) bounce back from an unforeseen challenge that threatens your performance goals? Does the unknown obstacle stress you out — or does it invigorate you to find a solution?
Do you wait for someone else to solve it — or do you take the reins and lead the group forward?
Whatever your response, your employees are watching you and taking their cues on how they should interpret and respond to the crisis based on you respond to it.
It has been said that “life is what happens when you’re planning something else.” So I have one final tip:
Always keep your sense of humor!
Stuff happens. Fretting, getting angry, casting blame, or freezing will never solve the problem. Don’t deny that the challenge exists. Instead, choose to respond in a way the limits stress and builds resiliency for everyone. The decision is yours.
P.S.: This video is the post-keynote interview that was shared on PHRA’s YouTube channel.
©2020 Dr. Geri Puleo.
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